The Magic of one thing in 2020 and beyond

Sometimes life-changing things can happen anywhere anytime …

One such life-changing event happened on Dec 28, 2017, during a cab ride in Mumbai, India.

After a client meeting, I was on my way to the airport. I was reflecting on a year coming to an end and a new one about to start. And suddenly so many things flashed before me that I always wanted to do.

  • Meditation
  • Reading books which are gathering dust in shelves
  • Spending time with kids
  • Exercising
  • Coming home early from office
  • Writing
  • Eating food early
  • etc

Does the above list look familiar during a new year ?. Yes, we call the above items as new year resolutions

. As the list increased, so did my

anxiety. Will I be able to do them this year ?. I was anxious because I have not been able to do any of them regularly. Yes, I was regularly irregular. When we experience true yearning and intent, the universe opens doors in many unusual ways. And one such door was about to be opened in my life, which would change my life forever…

That door opened in the form of the book ‘The One thing’.I had heard the book summary on blinkist earlier and finally started reading the

What is the one thing I can do such that by doing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?
book in Dec 2017. I had finished a few chapters by Dec 28 and was already captivated by its simplicity. Interestingly, the entire book is based on one simple and powerful question called the focusing question.

Have you heard of the Pareto principle or 20-80 rule?

It says that 20% of items create 80% of the impact. ‘One thing concept’ applies Pareto principle untile we get the one thing.


Let’s take an example to understand it better.

Let’s say if your CEO asks you to find 100 things to improve sales. After finding 100 things, you apply 20-80 rule to get 20 high impact items. You again apply 20-80 rule on 20 items to get 4 items. And then you apply 20-80 rule on 4 items to get 0.8(or 1). That’s the one thing. From 100 items on sales improvement, ‘one thing mindset’ makes you choose and focus on only one item. One thing concentrates on achieving more by doing less.


Now back to Dec 28, 2017, Cab ride

In my desire to change my ‘Regularly Irregular’ state on new year resolutions, I used the focusing question


What is the one habit I can develop in 2018 such that by developing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?


Interestingly, the answer came promptly. It was


Join the 5 am Club


Sometimes it is wise to go with the flow rather than a lot of logical reasoning.I am glad that I went with the flow. On Jan 2, 2018, I woke up at 5 am with support from an alarm clock. I can’t tell you how much the body resisted to wake up from the cozy blanket. If ‘one thing mindset’ was not there, Mind would have supported the body.

In that sleepy state, Mind said ‘Its only one thing of waking up at 5am, let’s give it a shot’. Even Mind cooperates when we focus on fewer things 🙂


I woke up, and that morning opened a new chapter in my life.


As I woke up at 5 am, the question came, ‘ What to do now ?’


Reading came as a prudent choice, and I started reading the book ‘The One Thing’ from where I left off in Dec 2017. After 20 -30 mins of reading, I looked at the watch. It was still 5:30 am. I then did a few Yoga postures and meditation. I had my breakfast early and was able to start work around 8 am. Since I began to work early, I could finish my work earlier. I had my dinner at 7 pm rather than usual 8:30 pm.

I then watched one TV serial with Kids followed by two bedtime stories. Everything was done by 9:15 pm. Wow! Going to bed at 9:15 pm was a wonderful change from the usual 11 pm. Knowing that it takes 66 days to form a new habit, I was very diligent in waking up at 5 am for the first 66 days. Over time this routine became predictable, and it gave space to many new things in my life. Gratitude practice, Cycling, and writing were three new things that I continue to enjoy even now.

Gratitude practice gave me a sense of fulfillment.

Cycling during sunrise gave me excellent exercise and made me relive childhood memories.

Writing led me to publish my first book, ‘The Ultimate Sale Accelerator, One Surprisingly powerful strategy to create EPIC Sales in Business and in Life’  in Jul 2019. The concept of the book is also inspired by one thing question that I asked myself in July 2018′ over breakfast with my wife.

If somebody asked me, what is the one thing that contributed the maximum to my success in sales. What would I respond ?’

Now you may be wondering, All this is good, but where is the Magic.

Let’s look at the list mentioned at the beginning of this article.

Just by doing the one thing of waking up at 5 am club, all the other stuff got done … Magical, isn’t it … 🙂 Over time, it became a habit.


One thing certainly creates a domino effect. Isn’t it?


As I approach 2020, I asked the one thing question again on Dec 24, 2019.


What is the one habit I can develop in 2020 such that by developing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?


And this time also answer came quickly.

Tidy up and remove clutter from your space.

And this time also I found the inspiration from a book

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing


I have found my one thing for 2020. Have you found yours?

If yes, I wish you all the best.

If not yet, I wish that this blog inspires you to find your one thing in 2020 and beyond. You could use the focussing question to find your one thing.


What is the one habit I can develop in 2020 such that by developing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?


May you harness your one thing in 2020 and unveil its Magic in your life.

Happy New Year!





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